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Proceedings of the 2003 ACM/IEEE conference on Supercomputing
Parallel netCDF: A High-Performance Scientific I/O Interface
Phoenix, Arizona
November 15-November 21
ISBN: 1-58113-695-1
Jianwei Li, Northwestern University
Wei-keng Liao, Northwestern University
Alok Choudhary, Northwestern University
Robert Ross, Argonne National Laboratory
Rajeev Thakur, Argonne National Laboratory
William Gropp, Argonne National Laboratory
Rob Latham, Argonne National Laboratory
Andrew Siegel, Argonne National Laboratory
Brad Gallagher, University of Chicago
Michael Zingale, University of California, Santa Cruz
Dataset storage, exchange, and access play a critical role in scientific applications. For such purposes netCDF serves as a portable, efficient file format and programming interface, which is popular in numerous scientific application domains. However, the original interface does not provide an efficient mechanism for parallel data storage and access.
In this work, we present a new parallel interface for writing and reading netCDF datasets. This interface is derived with minimal changes from the serial netCDF interface but defines semantics for parallel access and is tailored for high performance. The underlying parallel I/O is achieved through MPI-IO, allowing for substantial performance gains through the use of collective I/O optimizations. We compare the implementation strategies and performance with HDF5. Our tests indicate programming convenience and significant I/O performance improvement with this parallel netCDF (PnetCDF) interface.
Jianwei Li, Wei-keng Liao, Alok Choudhary, Robert Ross, Rajeev Thakur, William Gropp, Rob Latham, Andrew Siegel, Brad Gallagher, Michael Zingale, "Parallel netCDF: A High-Performance Scientific I/O Interface," sc, pp.39, Proceedings of the 2003 ACM/IEEE conference on Supercomputing, 2003
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